Network Coding for Data Dissemination: It Is Not What You Know, But What Your Neighbors Know

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Executive Summary

The authors propose a linear network coding scheme to disseminate a finite number of data packets in arbitrary networks. The setup assumes a packet erasure channel, slotted time, and that nodes cannot transmit and receive information simultaneously. The dissemination process is completed when all terminals can decode the original data packets. They also assume a perfect knowledge of the information at each of the nodes, but not necessarily a perfect knowledge of the channel. A centralized controller decides which nodes should transmit, to what set of receiver nodes, and what information should be broadcasted. They show that the problem can be thought of as a scheduling problem, which is hard to solve.

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